Table of contents
The basic idea of this guide is to provide an easy access to the art of warding as well to improve mediocre players. There are already many good and even better wardguides out there nevertheless I will try to provide a quick overview with a marked mainmap. One of my goals while creating this was to focus on wards you can always use. This means there are probably better wardspots as soon as a tower has fallen. It also includes many points with nearly the same vision and purpose. Here it is up to you to find out which spot you prefer. It will not include a list with heroes who should buy the wards through the different stages of the game. Anyhow most of the time the support/gang heroes should get them but those can vary each game. Besides even typical carry players should know at least the basic wardspots.
To mark the start here are the basics just for the sake of completeness:
Observer Ward 200 Sentry Ward 200 Lasts 6 minutes Lasts 3 minutes Contains 2 charges Contains 2 charges Maximum stock of 2 in store Store stock takes 6 minutes to replenish Stacks with itself in inventory Stacks with itself in inventory Observer Ward has 1600 vision, 200 HP, and is invisible Sentry Ward has 70 vision, 950 AoE True Sight, 200 HP, and is invisible
- Wards with runesight
- Wards to block creepcamps
- Wards to discover important places
- Wards with basesight
Let's have a closer look how much vision each ward will provide.
Vision Bottom Lane
Vision Mid Lane
Vision Top Lane
Basevision Scourge Base
Basevision Sentinel Base
Now to the probably hardest part when you should use which spot mentioned. Unfortunately there won't be an explicit answer for this. You have to be able to read in which direction the game is going to change for the next 6 minutes. For example you won't benefit from a ward in the enemy forest if there is no one farming because they put pressure on your base. Neither it won't help you to ward only rune spots if they are turteling and won't go near the river anyway. To provide an informative basis this could help you but you should not cramp on it at all costs.
Block pullcamps, vision for runes
It is always helpful to prevent the enemies from pulling creeps. Also to prevent typical forest heroes from free farming for instance blocking the 3 camps with 2 wards on the sentinel side. This might force the enemy hero to go on a lane, buy sentry wards, or start creeping in your own jungle where he is way more vulnerable.
Having vision on runes is also never wrong most of the time the (carry) hero in mid will get a bottle and benefit most from it. Those wards work great against gangs for both your lane and his as well since you get vision of the river which is the mostly used path to gang in this stage of the game.
Vision for runes, Roshan, behind towers, ambush areas
In this stage of game it's still very useful to have vision of the river. Most of the gangs are done in Mid Game that is why you might even want to consider to ward behind the enemy tower. With this vision you can pretty invulnerably push them down since you always know if the enemy team ported already or will run across the river. On the other side if your team didn't do that well in early game your wards can turn the tide. Just try to set them more defensive and allow your team mates the safe required farming.
Roshan, ambush areas, Base
Basically you should keep using the same spots like in Mid Game but with a much higher attention to your current situation. There should always be a ward near roshan up so you even know before the enemy team started attacking him what they are trying. You might even ward their jungle similar to the early stage of the game with the difference not to block the spots since you want to get one of them alone preferably not full hp. For warding the enemy base I would advise to only do it if you got some scary AoE ultis in your team or you are pushing against someone with dagger and need to spot him as early as possible.
Of course it is helpful having vision of particular parts of the map but it would be even better if your enemies would have no vision at all. Remember Observer Wards stock takes 6 minutes to replenish while Sentry Wards are available all the time. This is one of the most important parts to get real mapcontrol against your opponents. It is crucial to know when and where they put up their wards. The easiest way to achieve the necessary knowledge is placing observer wards before your opponents put theirs up. Otherwise you blow 200 gold away for 200 vision (read none). This is the main reason why I put so many optional places into my guide. Placing them all the time just on the BEST spot allows your enemy to counter them pretty easily. You aim to analyze your enemy as fast as possible and use his behaviors to your advantage.
Basically you want to cover with one Sentry Ward at least 2 potential wardspots if you didn't see the enemy placing them. If you plan to counterward in your own jungle you also don't want to block one of your creepcamps from spawning (visit this link for more information about spawning areas).
Commonly used Sentry Wardspots
I added an overlay to each picture which is supposed to show the 800 true sight AoE. I tried to make it as accurate as possible but there might be a small difference between the real 800 AoE and the one I used.
Other items/skills with true sight
Gem of True Sight 700
Assured the best way to counter Wards. To destroy wards on cliffs you might want to use your Flying Courier simply right click on your and it will follow you. Only downside is if your hero dies the Gem is dropped.
Necronomicon LVL3 5200
After upgrading Necronomicon to LVL3 your Necronomicon Warrior has a 1000 AoE True Sight. Those little summons can spot and kill wards alone. Allowing your hero to stay rather safe in the background. Downside here is apparently the high price and you won't be able to summon them for 90 seconds.
Very situational usage to spot Wards since it gives true sight within 900 range for 3 seconds.
Not very useful to spot wards just mentioned for the sake of completeness.
Feedback, missing info, constructive criticism all welcome.
Zan for posting the blown up mapChangelog:
Everyone who suggested additional Wardspots in the comments/helped to improve the guide
Icons taken from playdota